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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
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Experience:  Lawyer
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In December 2013, we enrolled some credit debt into a debt

Customer Question

In December 2013, we enrolled some credit debt into a debt relief program. In December 2014, we received a Complaint in Civil Action saying we were going to be sued for breach of contract. We responded with a Notice of Intent to defend to include the information on the debt relief program verifyiing the program is in active negotiations with Discover Bank in an attempt to resolve the debt. On 1/8/16, we received notice of a Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings was being filed on 1/15/16. My question: Will this motion simply say we owe the money (which we are not disputing), or could it state we owe the balance now? Please advise on what this Judgment on Pleadings means. Thank you.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 10 months ago.

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

Judgment on the Pleadings means that, since you did not dispute owning the debt in your response, there is no need to have a trial. The purpose of trial is for the judge to determine the facts - meaning, whether you really owe the money or not. If you admitted that you owe the money but are trying to reach a resolution, the judge can enter a judgment against you without needing to hear any evidence.

When a judge enters a judgment against you, it's payable "forwith," which essentially means "as soon as possible." Now, as a practical matter, if you don't have the money lying around, they're still going to have to accept that money over a period of time. They can use the judgment to levy your bank account and take out money in there, and they can use it to put a lien on your house, though, so if you have enough equity to pay the judgment, you may want to look into a home equity loan or line of credit. But the judge can't force you to produce money you don't have.

Now, you said that motion's being filed tomorrow. So you still have today to try to see if the creditor is willing to try to work out a resolution with you rather than spending the money to go to court and try to collect. But if they file the motion, the judge will enter judgment against you. The creditor is not required to refrain from trying to collect while you're in a debt relief program, unless you'd filed for bankruptcy (which means there would be an immediate stay on proceedings).

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